What are Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD)?

Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) are genetic neurological disorders. Characteristic features of ASD include impairments in social interaction, communication, and restricted interests. The degree of impairment varies across individuals with ASD.

ASD Provincial Program Services at NSHSC offer family-centered care, off-site services and include a variety of treatment options.

What are the typical assessment procedures?

ASD may be diagnosed by the mental health team at your local district health authority or by qualified private practitioners. Speech-language pathologists (S-LPs) do not diagnose ASD.

The ASD provincial services assessment will involve formal and/or informal testing of speech and language skills, clinical observations, and caregiver reports of the child’s communication skills at home, preschool, and/or in the community.

Who can be referred?

ASD Provincial Services are available to preschool children with a reserved or a confirmed diagnosis of ASD.

Who can refer?

Anyone can refer a preschool child for ASD services.

Who should be contacted with the referral?

Referrals and questions may be directed to your local NSHSC site.

Upon receipt of referral, you will be asked to complete a case history form. It is important to fill out and return the case history form as soon as possible. As a spot becomes available, you will be contacted for an initial consultation where an S-LP will assess your child’s communication skills and determine the next step of intervention.